R U a Black Sheep?

Authors Note: ‘black’ in the context of this article has absolutely nothing to do with human skin pigment. It is an idiom that expresses a figurative and non-literal meaning. It relates to personal conduct, non-conformity, attitude and human behavior.

In Genesis 30 of the Old Testament there’s an interesting story about black sheep. Jacob, twin son of Isaac and Rebecca, would like to stay and keep working for his livestock manager Laban. His wages for the arrangement includes possession of any black lambs, or speckled or spotted sheep and goats, the ones perceived incorrectly by some as having less value. In this story however, black as a color relates to keen mental foresight, future prosperity and individuality as power realized.

R U a Black Sheep?

Do you have unusual foresight and an extraordinary sense of who you are and what you want? Do you value your autonomy? Do you believe like me, that you are a sentient being, created by nature, born free and owned by no one including the state?

Baa, Baa, Black Sheep
Baa, baa, black sheep, Have you any wool?
Yes, sir, yes, sir, Three bags full
One for the master, And one for the dame
One for the little boy, Who lives down the lane

Although twisted and loaded with controversy in recent times, the original meaning of this famous nursery rhyme, originally printed in Tommy Thumb’s Pretty Song Book in 1744, is clearly ‘positive’.

The wool of black sheep was prized because it could be made into dark cloth without dying. When black garments became fashionable, black fleece increased in market value based on supply and demand, but when white wool was in demand and common to fashion, the black color of the sheep diminished in value.

In fact it was even seen by some as the mark of the devil. Fashion for the most part, is clearly determined by culture, designers and marketing, not by reality or functional need. The message here is that the perceived value of any color is completely arbitrary.

R U a Black Sheep?

Do you accept who and what you are? Do you understand that your general attitude and disposition, although rejected or condemned by mainstream, is a rare commodity of fantastic wealth and extremely beneficial?

Many families regard someone in their kin group or clan, often a son or daughter, as a ‘black sheep’. To the family, the unacceptable behaviour or attitude of the black sheep in question is deemed disgraceful. The black sheep may have done something ‘bad’ that brought embarrassment or shame to his or her family.

But when objectively analyzed was it really that bad, or simply unlike how most people think, act or behave? Who determines what is good or bad, you or your family, society or religion? Perhaps you derive your worth and self-esteem from your own assessment of life and reality, as opposed to the group. How many people out there appear to be happy and have it together, but in actuality live in agony and despair daily as they conform to the whims of the mob for acceptance, while secretly hating themselves and envying the black sheep they openly criticize?

R U a Black Sheep?

Do you constantly stir the pot without trying or aggravate others merely by the experience of your own individual authentic existence? Do you feel like an outcast? In your mind do you live isolated on a deserted island, constantly looking for someone like yourself, wanting desperately only to find someone you can trust and talk you, who won’t ridicule your sentiment or attempt to destroy your ideas emotionally? Is what you really think about reality, religion, sex, drugs, medicine, music and health in direct opposition to almost everyone alive?

If so, you are not alone.

What happens when you voice your own honest opinion without censor? Are you metaphorically shot down by the group, meaning those who are threatened by your ability to be true to yourself and live your life according to a specific set of principles and an outstanding moral code, that you designed yourself? Are you in continuous conflict with the world around you and status quo (convention)? Have you been rejected by your church or family? Were you kicked out of your house, fired, disowned or thrown to the curb by a good friend? Did you grow up without acceptance and barely tolerated? Were you forced to contain yourself, and ‘be’ someone or something other than who you really were?

R U a Black Sheep?

If you think you’re a black sheep, then celebrate it! Own it! Claim your personal power! Employ the courage you already have to accept what is true! If this indeed is true about you, then you’re in great mixed company. Well known black sheep include the likes of Jane Fonda, Ayn Rand, Amelia Earhart, Spartacus, Nikola Tesla and Socrates, just to name a few. In each case these black sheep examples were fiercely independent, brilliant innovators, free thinkers and enormously intelligent.

They rocked every boat, shocked every teacher and knocked down every white picket fence. Like Spartacus who was born in slavery, all they wanted was to be free! Free to ‘be’ and free to ‘do’.

Black sheep are typically characterized by unacceptable behavior as a small minority, surrounded by the mob. Often they are labelled as bad, out-of-control, social misfits, mentally unstable, weird, unruly, savage, arrogant, beyond strange, health food freaks, fitness fanatics or simply ‘eccentric’. Black sheep are typically not leaders by inherent desire, because black sheep tend not to seek leadership or follow the crowd. They’re like Daniel Boone. They live and breathe for independence and the pursuit of their own happiness.

Black sheep are self-serving and able to manage themselves without aid or the turn-style psychological support offered by conventional society. More than anything, the mob wants you to CONFORM to the whims and wishes of the group, however irrational, and usually without regard for your own personal happiness, and if not, YOU are the enemy!

R U a Black Sheep?

The term stems from sheep whose fleece is colored black rather than the more common white. Their color makes them stand out in the flock. Great! Take your jacket off and let people see who you really are. What do you have to lose that you haven’t already lost? But more importantly, what do you have to gain? Are you judged as a deviant by any group that lives differently from you? Are you punished in any way by convention for your dedication to clean organic food, routine physical exercise and/or the consistent consumption of natural health products (NHPs)? If so, be thankful for this persecution. Enjoy the attention. Revel in it because it’s a testament to your profound and uncanny ability to live free and unobstructed by those who will never understand you and quite frankly, DON’T have your best interest in mind. They have their best interest in mind.

What the mob wants more than anything is for you to sacrifice your individuality and biological uniqueness, including your personal thoughts and desires; to throw them to the wind, more or less. But why?

So you can help make them feel less insecure. After all, isn’t it your social ‘duty’ to be like everyone else, to run with the herd, to migrate with the salmon or congregate mindlessly with the penguins? Personally, if I ‘woke-up’ and found myself in one of those breeding colonies in Antarctica, I’d get the hell out-of-dodge and head north to the Equator!

Photo by: Shopify Partners

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